February. It’s a month that, in Missoula, I always look forward to. To me, February feels like the midway point of winter. February is also the month in which my favorite non-Tell Us Something event takes place: the Big Sky Documentary Film Festival. An entire week of storytelling on film. The BSDFF is where I met some of my first friends when I moved to Missoula back in 2003 through the joy of volunteering. It’s also a week that always seems to have some warm days, some sunshine, and some blue skies. Maybe I am misremembering. That’s how it feels, anyway.
This February looks much different, of course. Yes, the BSDFF is still happening — responsibly and virtually. Hopefully, we will again see some of those harbingers of spring too: clear blue skies and golden sunshine all along the way.
This time last year, Tell Us Something was awash in gratitude from the support we received at our first major fundraiser. (You can pick up a recording of that here if you like. Release and Attack produced this mix right here in Missoula!) We were looking forward to a big year of celebrating our 10-year anniversary.
2020 brought many unexpected surprises. This month has me feeling reflective and grateful. Yes, grateful. 2020 brought many opportunities along with its challenges. And many new stories.
We won’t be hosting a big in-person fundraiser this year. Please do save the date for Missoula Gives, though, on May 6 and 7, 2021.
To help offset some of the lost revenue from canceled events, Tell Us Something expanded its corporate storytelling workshops. You can listen to the result of one of those on a recent Tell Us Something podcast that features participants of the MEDA workshop. Learn more about corporate workshops here, or just drop me a line.
Speaking of workshops, Tell Us Something is running a pay-what-you-want drop-in storytelling workshop every Saturday through April. Come prepared with a story that you’d like to work on. This month and during March, I’m welcoming those with stories that are possible as a result of the pandemic. Is there something that you learned? Did you re-discover a passion? Did you start a new business? What is your pandemic story? Stop by Saturdays at 10:30 AM MST to workshop them. Sign up here.
The podcast continues to feature conversations with the storytellers of Tell Us Something. This week, we’ll feature a discussion with Nerma Dobriča-nin, a teacher from Montenegro. Nerma shared a story at Tell Us Something in June of 2018. It’s a fascinating story about life in another country during the pandemic. Hear about her experience at Tell Us Something, and how she welcoming her child into the world. Subscribe to the podcast so that you don’t miss it, or stream it at tellussomething.org.
I’ve also started catching up on the YouTube uploads! Check out the Helena “Didn’t See That Coming” show from April 2018 and the “Tipping Point ” show from December 2019 (the most recent in-person Tell Us Something show!)
Take care of yourself. Take care of each other. Wear your mask when you go out. Stay at home when you can, and have a story-worthy day.